Columns & Blogs

Cougs in must-win situation

The WSU men's basketball team goes up against 12th-ranked Arizona in a must-win game tonight. Most bubble watchers, including those at, wrote off Wazzu after it lost to middling Oregon and Stanford. But if the Cougs can beat Arizona on its home court, they could be back in the postseason conversation.

Still, one can't help but wonder whether it is too little, too late for the Cougs. Beating Washington and Arizona and losing to Oregon and Stanford would be a sign of a wildly inconsistent team. In fact, Wazzu has been entrenched in a win-loss-win-loss pattern since last month:

— Jan. 20 vs. Arizona State (W, 78-61)— Jan. 22 vs. Arizona (L, 65-63)— Jan. 30 vs. UW (W, 87-80)— Feb. 3 at Oregon (L, 69-43)— Feb. 5 at Oregon State (W, 61-55)— Feb. 10 vs. Stanford (L, 75-62)— Feb. 12 vs. California (W, 75-71)

The Cougs have just five regular-season games left. (Where has the season gone?) The NIT might be calling them now, but if the Cougs can't squeeze out a couple more wins in this stretch, they might even miss out on the College Basketball Invitational.